A Fantastic Fear Of Everything

"Good"

A Fantastic Fear Of Everything Review


Strikingly designed and directed, this offbeat film feels like a one-man stage show as the entire story's told through an internal monolog. So while we enjoy the witty, skilled acting and filmmaking, we never really care what happens.

After a career writing children's books, Jack (Pegg) is working on a screenplay about gruesome 19th century serial killers, which has left him a quivering wreck afraid to leave his Hackney flat. He ventures out for a meeting with his agent (Higgins), who sets up a meeting with a producer. But this will mean visiting the launderette, which is his greatest fear. As the nightmare escalates, Jack phones his mentor (Freeman) for help, then finds his fate eerily entwined with a local cop (Drake) and a woman (Karan) doing her laundry.

With intense attention to detail, musician-turned-filmmaker Mills (son of Hayley and John) creates a funky black-comedy vibe, concentrating on Pegg's expressive face and stream-of-consciousness voice-over. Mills clearly loves the heavily art-directed mordant comedies of Tim Burton and the Coens (most notably Barton Fink) and also makes witty pop-culture nods to everything from Psycho to Knightrider. The eye-catching shabby, cluttered production design echoes Pegg's disheveled life and crippling paranoia. So the film makes us laugh, cringe and jump.

Amusing gags are casually scattered in the background of every scene, while more obvious hilarity comes from Jack's obsession with his mentor's theory that all murderers develop a mad-eyed stare. His mind races far ahead of reality, making ludicrous connections that are portrayed in Pegg's wildly spiralling eyes and flapping physicality. And menacing shadows lurk everywhere, as Jack's flat is a riot of creaking red doors, gloomy hallways and red herrings. In other words, there's a lot going on even though nothing much is happening.

Even in a wonderfully elaborate stop-motion animated sequence, this film's style swamps its intriguing substance. It would have more punch if Pegg performed this same script alone on a barren stage, because our imagination would fill in the gaps. This would also paper over the narrative excesses, which include crazy coincidences, illogical incidents and loaded revelations.

As it gets increasingly nutty and horrific, the film is just too clever and detailed. Which leaves it feeling both long and dry.



A Fantastic Fear Of Everything

Facts and Figures

Run time: 100 mins

In Theaters: Friday 8th June 2012

Distributed by: Cinedigm Entertainment

Production compaines: Indomina Productions, Keel Films, Pinewood Studios

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 33%
Fresh: 9 Rotten: 18

IMDB: 5.9 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Crispian Mills

Producer: Crispian Mills, Geraldine Patten

Starring: as Jack, as Dr. Friedkin, Clare Higgins as Clair De Grunwald, as Sangeet, Alan Drake as Perkins, Michael Feast as Disgruntled Diner, Mo Idriss as Disgruntled Diner, Elliot Greene as Biggie, Harley Kierans as Tiny, Kamal Onyiukah as Noodles

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

A seriously impressive feature directing debut with a star-making central performance, this period British drama...

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

It was never going to be easy to match the impact of 2014's Guardians of...

The Promise Movie Review

The Promise Movie Review

The director of Hotel Rwanda, Terry George, turns to another humanitarian horror: the systematic murder...

Their Finest Movie Review

Their Finest Movie Review

Skilfully written, directed and acted, this offbeat British period film tells a story that catches...

Unforgettable Movie Review

Unforgettable Movie Review

With heavy echoes of trashy thrillers like Fatal Attraction, this movie overcomes its painfully simplistic...

The Belko Experiment Movie Review

The Belko Experiment Movie Review

The kill-or-die scenario that this movie hinges on isn't something new; it's been used in...

The Fate of the Furious Movie Review

The Fate of the Furious Movie Review

With the more dumbed-down title Fast & Furious 8 outside of North America, this overcrowded...

Advertisement
A Quiet Passion Movie Review

A Quiet Passion Movie Review

British writer-director Terence Davies (The Deep Blue Sea) is an expert at digging beneath the...

The Sense of an Ending Movie Review

The Sense of an Ending Movie Review

Julian Barnes' Booker Prize-winning novel is adapted into a remarkably intelligent, gently involving film anchored...

The Boss Baby Movie Review

The Boss Baby Movie Review

There isn't a lot of subtlety in this madcap animated comedy, which is more aimed...

City of Tiny Lights Movie Review

City of Tiny Lights Movie Review

After the latest incarnation of Dredd, director Pete Travis shifts gears drastically for this complex...

Going in Style Movie Review

Going in Style Movie Review

This is only technically a remake of the iconic 1979 film starring movie icons George...

Graduation Movie Review

Graduation Movie Review

Romanian filmmaker Cristian Mungiu (4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days) recounts another staggeringly detailed...

Ghost in the Shell Movie Review

Ghost in the Shell Movie Review

This sci-fi thriller is so visually stunning that it deserves to be mentioned in the...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.